A GUIDE TO THE OREGON COAST
Oregon is a State in the United States that has surprised me the most. I knew that I would loved Portland’s vegan food scene and cool hip vibe, but I didn’t not expect to see so much beauty outside it’s city. I mean, I knew that Cannon Beach was very popular, and that there was a lot of hiking, but I don’t know, I guess not having massive expectations makes you fall in love even more with new places.
On this guide, you will find the spots we visited on the Oregon Coast, from very popular touristy ones that should not spend much time in, to not so popular ones that deserve a week to explore. Don’t forget to check out my full Oregon guide here, Portland’s Guide here and a vegan foodie guide to Portland’s guide here.
A GUIDE TO THE OREGON COAST
Famous for Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach is a must on everyone’s Oregon Coast visit. I wouldn’t personally spend a lot of time in the town, since it is very touristy, crowed and a bit overpriced to my taste. But a good long walk along the beach is a MUST!
South from Cannon beach you will find Manzanita, a smaller town along the coast with a beautiful beach. A bit less crowded and with a more laid back vibe, Manzanita it is definitely the town to stop by to grab some food, coffee or walk along the beach. We loved A Mighty Thai, a Thai Restaurant (ask for the curry or their famous peanut sauce noodles), the coffee at Manzanitas news and espresso and fresh organic groceries from Mother Nature’s Natural Food.
A non-planned stop that we loved! We parked at the beach parking lot to have some breakfast before going to back to the road, and end up staying there the whole day, and we could have stayed for days. Cape Kiwanda it’s a surfers paradise and a first dune’s experience. With also a long white beach, Cape Kiwanda allows you to drive and park in the beach, we don’t have a 4x4 so we stayed at the parking lot, but if you can, do it.
On the right hand side you will see a sand hill that takes you into a small hike with amazing views from the ocean. Highly recommend doing it!
A MUST! We were surprised to find out Oregon has some epic dunes. There’s a few ways to explore the Dunes, by foot, ATV, dune buggy or lightweight sand rail. We only did it by foot, but it was incredible! Here’s a few trails that you have to check out, some are longer than others, but all with amazing views and even some animal traces!
Oregon Day use area:
A great start for your first time walking in dunes. It is 3 mile loop that starts in the Oregon Day use area parking and takes you through the dunes to the beach and back to the dunes, or the other way around. Highly recommend to get there early and spend at least half of the day there. We took our coffee, tea and breakfast down to to the beach, and then walked the way back (longest part of the trail). It will be potentially empty or with fewer people and you can see some traces from animals.
Tahkenitch Creek Trail
A longer hike (6 miles total), that takes you from the trailhead through the forest, some dunes and to the beach and back. These was an awesome way to see all the diversity, from plants to mushrooms and some birds. Definitely pack water and snacks, and be prepared for potential rain. The beach is connected to the trail at the Oregon day use area trail (2 miles in between), so you could potentially add a bit more steps to your day.
John Dellenback Dunes Trailhead
We didn’t have the chance to do this trail due the amount of rain when we visited, but it was highly recommended by the visitor center crew. The dunes in this area are huge, and this is the only trail that is open to hike without having to worry for motor vehicles around. We will be back in this area, and will update you on how easy or hard it is! Apparently is on the harder side.
Can not recommend the Oregon Coast more, even in winter was beautiful (and less crowded), and can’t wait to be back!
If you have questions, or suggestions please tell me below or message me on Instagram!